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Research: Benefits of Flaxseed Oil

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http://www.northernnews.ca/ArticleDispl ... ?e=1043280

Excerpt from Editorial:

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Not only is flaxseed oil good for your heart and part of a healthy diet, it may also be effective against cancer, researchers say.

"We have used a relatively simple approach to show that treatment of cultured cancer cells with flaxseed oil results in a decrease in cell growth," said Robert Lafrenie, a career scientist in the Regional Cancer Program at the Sudbury Regional Hospital.

Furthermore, flaxseed oil kills only the cancerous cells, leaving the healthy cells intact. "Flaxseed oil is able to distinguish between what is malignant and what is not," said Alison Buckner, a Laurentian University master's student under Lafrenie's supervision. "The flaxseed oil is giving the cells a signal."

Some other researchers are testing older off-patent drugs for anti-cancer effects. These are drugs that have been used in the past to treat a variety of medical conditions, but not cancer.

"In my lab, we are testing chloroquine, which is an anti-malarial agent," said Dr. Hoyun Lee, a research associate in the Regional Cancer Program. Similar to flaxseed, this drug is able to selectively kill cancer cells, but leaves normal cells alone.

"The problem with a cancer cell is it doesn't die - either spontaneously or through treatment with chemotherapy," said Dr. Aaron Schimmer, a physician and research scientist at Princess Margaret Hospital and the Ontario Cancer Institute."If you think about it - if a cancer cell died, we wouldn't have most of the problems we have with cancer." So, the researchers are looking for natural products or older drugs, with an established safety record, that are capable of killing cancer cells.

"We've identified some older antibiotics and anti-parasitic agents that have unrecognized anti-cancer activity and we're now moving them into clinical trials for our patients," said Schimmer. "We will be moving from the lab to the bedside in a short period of time."

"In the future, we hope that by using a combination of these anti-cancer therapies, we can greatly reduce side effects (of traditional cancer treatments)," said Lee.

"This is the fascinating aspect of this research."Anti-cancer agent researchers from across Ontario gathered together Thursday in a symposium at the Northeastern Ontario Regional Cancer Centre.

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(Northern News, Editorial, By Laura Mucklow, May 26, 2008)


The information contained in these articles may or may not be in agreement with my own opinions. They are not posted as medical advice of any kind.

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